Federico Brook - Artista - Scultore

Artist’s profile

“All sculpture – as my friend Federico Brook says – is characterized by at least two elements: the material the sculpture is made of and light. These two elements qualify each other as form. Thus, creating a sculpture means creating a form that shapes space. The material he uses for this work is a transparent plastic that seems to catch light on purpose and concentrate the infinite space into the geometry of its planes and volumes. Any subsequent formal determination will be produced inside the geometrical block where space and form become one thing. So it is possible, or rather frequent, to find in his sculptures other materials and forms, that since the beginning qualify themselves as internal: just as the mechanism inside the watchcase. This is not a random comparison, as I think that Brook’s fixed idea is the spatial watch – an imaginary clepsydra, filtering space instead of time. Very often such plastic devices have a virtual movement, not mechanical but natural, that is governed by the ordinary equilibrium laws. This is the case of the pendulum, the lever, and the balance. Behind such an idea, that is not odd at all, there is a deeper one: that of the microcosm, of the universal movement reproduced into the enclosed space of a transparent test tube. According to Brook, plastic research aims at nothing but reproducing – or even trapping – a fragment of the universal space, an imperceptible movement or a leap of the cosmos, in the transparent bounds of a strange disquieting – yet very clear – object. His very modern perfect technology is only an instrument, like the sextans used in antiquity for the celestial measurements. Actually, it is once more the attitude of the primitive man that comes out when Brook is absorbed in the contemplation of the cosmos, furtively taking possession of fragments of cosmic space. This might be the moral – if there is a moral – of his discourse: despite the contemporary and future technology, and the pride of his science, man will always be primitive in front of the infinite motion of the cosmos.”


Giulio Carlo Argan, 1972

Translation by Susanna Capezzone